2018 — Book Review

Against Nature: On Laboria Cuboniks' "Xenofeminist Manifesto"

Koby L. Omansky

Cleveland Review of Books

LC responds to this with a front-and-center sucker punch: “Rationalism itself must be a feminism.” Right to the girl-gut. We have said this: quietly with academic integrity, and yelled across the table, at the fronts of men and to their backs, with many more words in much sloppier ways: that the heart is the matter. My main qualm with the vision of xenofeminism is this: its merely cursory mention of family and caregiving. It addresses the domestic sphere only in order to vaguely assert that it must not be exempt from the transformative power of computation, with little to no explication of how or what this would look like. We know this to be the aggressive downfall of organizational systems, of economics that “assumes children come from cabbage patches” in the resounding words of Shirley P. Burggraf (author of The Feminine Economy & Economic Man). Of course in any vision of a more just world, we would like to believe our private worlds would be as lovingly radicalized as our public one, but this requires at the very least an addendum of the same length to paint a compelling portrait of and manual toward.